Jesus Ministers To The Deaf
What Jesus told Melissa, about her parents (us) coming to get her when it was her time to go, intrigued me. We know a death angel comes, and many times we have heard about the one passing on calling the name of a deceased loved one. I believe my own father was escorted home by his mother and sister. Time will tell.
During Melissas junior year she met a girl for whom she had great compassion. Linda was being ridiculed because she talked too much about religion. I wondered if she had turned to this out of loneliness. Linda was moon-eyed, and it appeared that no one had taken an interest in her. This condition is caused by a weak muscle letting the eye pull to the side. She later had an operation to correct this problem, but at the time of this experience, Linda was a very unhappy child. Her story is sad, but it again sheds light on how Jesus ministers to His children. When we are sad, He is sad.
She told Melissa that as she lay sleeping one evening, her deceased father came and touched her shoulder, waking her up. She sat up in bed and saw Jesus standing a little distance away. Jesus didnt speak. Her father told her that her tears of sadness caused him sorrow, and he had no peace because of it. He encouraged her not to cry anymore, and said that when her life was finished here, that he would come to get her and take her home to heaven. She held him and cried when he said he must leave, but he encouraged her again, then disappeared.
Linda was so happy to see him and wanted to share her joy with others the next day. She met only ridicule. None believed her except Melissa. Melissa knew these things can happen because she had seen Jesus too. The difference was, I had taught Melissa not to share her testimonies at school because they wouldnt believe her. She tried to help Linda the best she could.
Melissa and the Bicycle
When a teenager Melissa dreamed she was riding her bicycle and upon getting tired, she stopped to rest. Some boys came over to hurt her, and she began to pray. The clouds parted, and Jesus descended. He rebuked the boys, and they scattered. Then He said, Melissa, if you ever have trouble or are in danger, all you need to do is pray and I will come to help you. He then left and the dream ended.
What a wonderful promise she has! This protection is with her always and she knows it. Her faith never wavers because of this promise. Melissas senior year, she bought a bright yellow Toyota truck which she drove to school and work. A classmate from KSD worked at the same place, so she drove him to work from school and returned him there every night. One evening, she came home almost two hours late. My mind imagined all sorts of things. When she arrived and saw my concern, she scolded me saying, Mother, you know Jesus is taking care of me. And she meant it. She had to work late, and her workplace didnt have a TTY. She couldnt phone me.
This is her faith and mine also. I have nowhere else to turn; I must trust God completely, and I do. Jesus made me the promise that all of our children will magnify His name, and He will teach them and protect them, and the day will come when we all will go into His kingdom.
Angel On My Bumper
One snowy winter day Melissa was driving home from work down a narrow road. She had driven the family station wagon that day because it was bigger than her Toyota and would be safer for her, we thought. The snow was very deep leaving only one lane. A car was coming toward her, and with too little room to pass, she pulled over, sliding into the ditch. When she put the gears in reverse, the wheels only spun around digging in deeper. Again she tried with the same results. The car wasnt going to back up. Seeing her dilemma, the driver of the other car got out and came toward her to help. Melissa became frightened because she couldnt communicate. She remembered the dream to pray and ask for help. She did. Then she tried it one more time. She said suddenly, as if something took hold of the back bumper, the car began moving backward, was pulled back on the road, and off she went, leaving the man standing there wondering what happened. She was wondering too!
Here is a good example of faith and action working together. She had to step on the gas and God took it from there. Faith without works is dead. Her faith showed by her prayer, then action.
And we think no one
People need people to care for them. Especially the handicapped. Everyone needs attentionto be cared about. (You want to drive Satan crazy? Ignore him and what he does, he hates that).
While working as a teachers aide with the brilliant language teacher, Mrs. Pansy Hudson, I had occasion to hear many stories of her past experiences. Here is a woman who cares. Having taught some thirty plus years, this lady knows her business. To reach the deaf, everything is in the action. Mrs. Hudson learned the value of pantomime. The eyes of the deaf dont miss much. I have sat in her class and watched as she would look to the back of the room. If she made the slightest frown or changed expression, they would turn to see what she was looking at.
One day Mrs. Hudson was telling her junior high class a story about a tiger hunting for food. She was high-stepping, crouching, staring at the back of the room as if she saw something. Suddenly she leapt and all eyes turned to the back of the room to see what she was leaping at. When they looked back, she was gone from sight...no, there she lay on the floor. They all laughed, thinking the tiger fell and she was acting out part of the story. When she didnt get up they finally realized it was no joke. She had fallen on her elbow and it was broken. The next two weeks she wore a cast.
Mrs. Hudson gives her all for the deaf and handicapped. How wonderful it would be if all teachers were as dedicated as this gracious lady. Another day a deaf student was asked to lower the venetian blinds. They were quite wide, and he simply let them drop. I jumped out of the chair, and they all laughed. Mrs. Hudson explained to them how they must learn quietness when among hearing people.
Simple things we take for granted must be painstakingly taught to the deaf, blind, and handicapped. It is slow progress sometimes. I am offended when I hear someone refer to the deaf as deaf and dumb. Dumb is suppose to mean mute, a person cant speak, but it means stupid to most people, including the deaf. It is one of the myths of the dark ages that the deaf and blind cant learn.
Slang is hard for them. The English language is one of the most difficult to learn because of the many double meanings etc., and the deaf have to memorize all these. Some of our slang phrases are ridiculous. Melissa brought the newspaper to us one day with some concern. The headlines were: Population Explosion. Guess what she was seeing in her mind! How about, raining cats and dogs, or hit the road, or better yet, scared out of my skin. Their first thought is that's it's literal--until they learn we don't mean what we say
An article that appeared in The Daily News, 1978, tells the sad state of affairs in the handicapped world. The article said a 65-year-old woman thought her sister had died in KSD. She picked up the phone one day and her sister said, Hi. This sister, now 74, had been put in an institution for the mentally retarded at about the age of 15. There she remained for 34 years. When she was taken to a nursing home, tests were conducted on her and showed that she was of normal intelligence, only deaf. When asked how such a mistake had occurred for such a long time, the activities director of the nursing home said, Our records say she was a forgotten person. That means they just overlooked her.
I cried when I read this. People just didnt care. It reminded me of another almost forgotten or passed-by-person who wasnt retarded, nor dumb. Had it not been for Mrs. Hudson, this young man would not be making the contribution that he is capable of in society today. I will call him Jim.
Jim was a real troublemaker in his classes. He gnashed his teeth all the time, and annoyed his teachers. They began to pass him by, thinking he was mentally retarded. His reputation followed him from class to class as he grew. What Mrs. Hudson learned about him surprised them all. Jim wasnt stupid, he was bored with teachers whose inability to reach in and unlock his brain caused him frustration.
Love and genuine concern for Jim was the key. Mrs. Hudson took a real interest. She had that something special to give to Jim. She cared what happened to him. One day she took him into a dark closet with a world globe and a flashlight. She shined the light on the globe to demonstrate how the sun causes day and night as the earth rotates. He was fascinated. Jim became interested in geography and began studying. He developed rapidly. During a summer school program, he went to France as an exchange student. His sophomore year in high school he went on a student tour in Yugoslavia to see the Deaf Olympics. His junior year he went to Japan. Jim graduated from the Deaf College, and the last report Mrs. Hudson received about his progress was of his job with the Litton Research Center in Washington, D.C. to which he had keys to the building. His employers' evaluation of him, Wish we had more like him.
Jim was considered retardeddeaf and dumb as the uninformed in the hearing world call it, but not by Mrs. Hudson. She helped mold this young man into a productive citizen. Melissa was also failing. Mrs. Hudson took charge again. Melissa had been stepped up from grade 4 to 9 when the new superintendent came to KSD. He advanced all children to their own age group regardless of what they could understand. Five years of language training was lost. It was like putting a first grade student into the sixth grade and expecting them to catch up. It was very hard for her. The school was required by law to make her take courses in which she couldnt understand the language. By the grace of the Lord, and Mrs. Hudsons help, Melissa graduated with a C average. Again, someone had cared.
It is desperately important to care about people and what happens to them. Caring what happens to a brother is LOVE. Without this love, a human being will die, for man was made to love and be loved. It is instinct in man to need affection. Being needed and wanted by someone is one of the most important things on the earth. Everyone needs to be needed for himself and appreciated for what he or she is and has to offer.
YOU ARE OF GREAT WORTH
This following story was turned in to a teacher in Regina, Saskatchewan, by a senior in high school. Although it is not known whether or not he actually wrote it himself, it is known that he committed suicide a few weeks later. When I read it I could see him crying out for someone to understand his sanguine temperament, and apparently no one did. Sanguines are outgoing, light- hearted, needing to express themselves verbally. They like bright colors, reds and yellows. He needed a friend to express his feelings tosomeone to listen, but finally his voice became silent and then he died inside.
He always wanted to say things, but no one understood. He always wanted to explain things, but no one cared. So he drew.
Sometimes he would just draw and it wasnt anything.
He wanted to carve in the sky. He would lie out on the grass and look up at the sky and it would be only him and the sky and the things inside that needed saying.
And it was after that, that he drew the picture.
And it was a beautiful picture.
He kept it under the pillow and would let no one see.
And he would look at it every night and think about it.
And when it was dark and his eyes were closed, he could still see it. And it was all of him. And he loved it.
When he started school he brought it with him. Not to show anyone, but just to have it with him like a friend.
It was funny about school. He sat in a square, brown desk like all the other square, brown desks and he thought it should be red. And his room was a square, brown room. Like all the other rooms.
And it was tight and close.
He hated to hold the pencil and the chalk, with his arm stiff and his feet flat on the floor, stiff, with the teacher watching and watching. And then he had to write numbers. And they werent anything. They were worse than the letters that could be something if you put them together. And the numbers were tight and square and he hated the whole thing.
The teacher came and spoke to him. She told him to wear a tie like all the other boys. He said he didnt like them and she said it didnt matter.
After that, they drew. And he drew all yellow and it was the way he felt about morning. And it was beautiful.
The teacher came and smiled at him. Whats this? she said. Why dont you draw something like Kens drawing? Isnt that beautiful?
It was all questions.
After that his mother bought him a tie and he always drew airplanes and rocket ships like everyone else. And he threw the old picture away. And when he lay out alone looking at the sky, it was big and blue and all of everything, but HE wasnt anymore. He was square inside and brown, and his hands were stiff, and he was like anyone else. And the thing inside him that needed saying didnt need saying anymore. It had stopped pushing. It was crushed.
Stiff. Like everything else.
Care About Someone Near You